I eat healthy, why would I need to take additional supplements?
First, lets start of by saying that a well balanced, healthy diet is the first step to getting all of the nutrients your body needs. Healthy, organic and natural foods help the body process and absorb nutrition best. That said, studies have shown that even following such healthy diet and lifestyle our bodies are still missing important nutritional requirements.
The best way to find out what types of supplements you may need would be to consult your physician and do a full blood work panel to find out your deficiencies. An example of of a deficiency that would appear on the blood work would be iron (high potential in women or vegans).
What types of supplements do athletes need?
Some examples of supplements and what they may help with are:
• Protein powder
• Amino acids: promotes muscle growth and repair
• Glucosamine: Joint health (achy knees!)
• Zinc: Immunity boosters (no more colds!)
A few things to know about supplements
Supplements are not required to meet any sort of FDA (Food Administration) Standards. However, this does NOT meant that the products are not effective.
Supplements are found in a variety of every day products you may use like:
Caffeine has been used by endurance athletes for a very long time to help with brain stimulation and energy levels. Every tried having a coke in the middle of a workout or race when you are feeling tired? B-Vitamins are another common supplement that athletes and non athletes include in their daily diet. They are found in most meal replacement (bars, energy drinks, etc), as well as your immunity boosting mixes like Airborne and Emergency.
Where should I start?
As mentioned above, if you are looking to supplement your diet with additional nutrients that it may be missing from your every day food intake, consult your physician for a full blood work panel. If you are looking for immunity and muscle repair and recovery supplements, then begin by taking a multi-vitamin, electrolytes and possibly glucosamine for joint health.